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Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Counter-insurgency drive starts January

THE Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is set to implement the new counter-insurgency campaign under the Internal Peace and Security Plan (IPSP) framework starting January next year, shedding away “Oplan Bayanihan.”

AFP 10th Infantry Division Commander Rafael Valencia bared on Wednesday at The Royal Mandaya Hotel they have already formulated a new security framework in addressing the national threats that was already submitted to the chief of staff of AFP for approval.

“We are just waiting for the approval,” Valencia said.

Valencia said under the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte, the new plan will focus more on creating a sustainable platform and programs that will contribute to the nation building and promotion of peace to ensure and protect the well-being of the Filipinos.

This will replace the Oplan Bayanihan, which is the counter-insurgency program of former President Benigno Aquino III launched in 2011 that aims to “provide the strategic guidance in the performance of (the AFP's) mandated functions of protecting the state and the people. It shall help AFP units in planning for and contributing to the attainment of internal peace and security.”

Although he refused to divulge the new term for the new program after he was asked what would be the replacement IPSP name of Oplan Bayanihan, Valencia said the general concept would be more on “supporting law enforcement agency versus anti-drugs and criminality and then contribute to the promotion of lasting peace.”

Oplan Bayanihan was condemned by the communist rebels and indigenous people (IP) in far-flung areas for alleged violation of human rights and initiating abuses, killings and harassments, wherein, Valencia tagged it as a “motherhood statement” and urged these people who were allegedly mauled by the troops to bring it to the panel if they are violating the law and file appropriate cases to justify their claims.

“Kung may mga ganon (If there are violations), we immediately ask for specifics. If there are violations, file the appropriate case in court or nag-uusap naman ang CPP (Communist Party of the Philippines) at GRP (Government of the Republic of the Philippines) (CPP and GRP talk), bring it to them,” he said.

The IPSP gears towards defining, shaping and ensuring peace and security of the country against armed internal security threats beset by groups motivated by ideology such as the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People's Army.

Also, groups motivated by self-determination - Muslim groups like the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and the Moro National Liberation Front, terrorist groups - Abu Sayyaf Group and Jemaah Islamiyah.
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